I Was Your Favorite

Last night, Live Music Companion and I saw Neko Case at the Beacon Theater. The show was amazing, especially since he managed to get us in the eighth row (although the man with the fattest head in all five boroughs did manage to sit in front of me so…sigh. Post about terrible New York audiences and the things they do to annoy me TBD – I’ll be sure to mention the woman who slurped a Frapuccino during a Broadway show on Sunday). Anyway, Neko. While she sang, I kept thinking that Neko’s voice isn’t quite human and at one point the thought that came into my head was “Her voice – -I could take a bite out of it.” What? Whatever. It vibrates in a way that makes me think I could eat it. So what? (Is it possible to say “So what?” these days without thinking of Fred Armisen as Joy Behar? No.)

Music Companion actually gave me all the Neko albums I own, the first being Fox Confessor…, so the entire time at the show, I kept wanting to hear songs off that album, it’s my favorite and for whatever reason I think it’s her best music. Music Companion however, was clearly more taken with the songs off The Tigers Have Spoken – is it a general rule  that people latch on more tightly to the first album they hear of a particular artist? The first Beatles album I ever bought was Rubber Soul and for some reason it makes me the most nostalgic for high school – plus “Norwegian Wood” is a kick ass song, but in general there are songs I like better off other records, it’s just that Rubber Soul makes me feel something I don’t feel with the other ones. (It could very possibly be the slight punniness to its name. Let’s not count that out.) Every year or so there’s one artist I decide to love and obsess over an album, but it’s never the first album they’ve put out and it actually makes it harder for me to listen to previous albums they’ve made, regardless of how critically acclaimed they might be. So, to both of my readers, I ask you, is that a general rule, do you always fall in love with the first album you’ve heard by a particular artist? I’m genuinely interested, but I’m also hoping this theory explains why King of America is my favorite Elvis Costello album. ‘Cause seriously, no one sends that album their regards.

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    • Matt
    • November 17th, 2009

    I was at the show as well. Third time I’ve seen Neko now – first with my wife at the Allen Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center a few years ago, then again at the Newport Folk Festival this summer. Her voice was amazing last night and the Beacon is a perfect room for it. I had a couple of knuckleheads behind me talking all during Calexico’s set, but other than that the crowd was mostly respectful. I read somewhere else that she had a bit of a nightmare evening in New Jersey on Sunday, so I’m glad we didn’t get a repeat of that.

    FWIW your choice of “King of America” is a great one, as is “Rubber Soul”.

      • Liz
      • November 17th, 2009

      The audience definitely wasn’t bad last night –I’ll take sitting behind a guy with a big head over loud talkers, people who think they are pals with the singer and keep trying to holler out to her, or non-stop texters any day!

  1. Ahem! Blacklisted was actually my first Neko album. Tigers has some of my favorite songs–“Hex,” “Favorite” (technically a Canadian Amp track but whatever), “Train From Kansas City,” the title track–but also a few that I don’t really care for. Middle Cyclone is probably my overall favorite album.

      • Liz
      • November 18th, 2009

      Good, so you’ve disproven my theory then…Right? Thank you for clarifying, Music Companion.

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